When asked for comment on Friday, Commissioner Pries said, “I’m still hearing from establishments throughout the county who are worried about a prolonged delay in getting to full operations as it impacts their bottom line and ability to stay open. This isn’t just a Hershey area issue.”

Hershey, Pa – Dauphin County Commissioner Mike Pries announced the first wave of potential closings as three independently owned restaurants in the Hershey area say they “will not be able to survive much longer, short of immediately moving into the “Green” phase, and even then at 25-30% occupancy it will be a challenge.”

Many restaurants that had intended to close temporarily will not reopen, though their owners are declining to state this formally.

As a similar situation is unfolding in Philadelphia, restaurant industry watchers have predicted rampant closings caused by the coronavirus lockdown of bars and dining rooms.

Other restaurateurs that have in recent weeks pivoted to takeout and delivery are taking a new, harder look at an uncertain future that will include fewer seats, more restrictions, and even tighter margins. In many cases, restaurateurs are assessing whether the loans they accepted through the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program are a blessing or a curse.

Meanwhile, no date for ending the lockdown of dining rooms and bars has been set, confounding some owners.

 It was announced Friday that Dauphin, and some other Pennsylvania counties in will move into yellow phase.


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